You will fall in love with this crumb apricot cheesecake. Creamy cheesecake, topped with fresh apricot halves and encased in buttery crust. It tastes of summer!
For another summer-inspired cheesecake, take a look at our Raspberry Cheesecake Bars.
I get really excited when I get to share a recipe from my childhood. The one I am about to share with you is one of those recipes.
The first time I made it I was in my early teens and since then I’ve made it hundreds of times…literally! It was my mom and my go-to recipe when there was only about half an hour between a phone call and guests appearing on our doorsteps.
We made it so many times we used every kind of fruit filling possible. I thought we exhausted all the options but I was wrong!
I found myself with an urge to bake and a pound of farmer’s cheese. With perfect timing, I also found several recipes passed on to me by my mum!
The recipes were a collection of our family’s favourite recipes were sent to me when I left for college in America. Bingo! That’s exactly what I needed.
Still, even the most traditional recipes can be fun to play around with. What started out as my mom’s favourite recipe became highly experimental at some point of the process.
Fortunately it all worked out, and I was beyond pleased when I cut into my crumb apricot cheesecake and found out the risk payed off!
The original recipe was essentially a seasonal fruit encased in rich and buttery pastry. Somehow I ended up with a fruit cheesecake with a buttery crust and almond crumb topping. Pure luxury!
How to make Crumb Apricot Cheesecake
This recipe starts off in the food processor where the flour, cold butter, sugar and baking powder are pulsed until the mixture resembles fine bread crumbs. Then add the egg and pulse again until just combined. It’s also really easy to do this in a regular bowl with a pastry blender.
The pastry will now be soft and can be taken out of the food processor. Pinch off ⅓ of the pastry, wrap it in a plastic wrap and put in the freezer. Wrap the rest in the plastic wrap as well and put this portion in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Now let’s take care of the filling. Cut your apricots in half, take the pits out and set them aside. (I planned to also use red and black currants at first but changed my mind and that is why they are in the picture!)
Combine the farmer’s cheese or cream cheese, eggs, sugar, semolina and vanilla bean seeds in a large bowl using a hand mixer until smooth. You can also use a food processor if you want your farmer’s cheese to be less grainy. I processed mine in a food processor for a beautiful silky consistency.
Assembling the cheesecake
The pastry will be finished chilling after 30 minutes and can be taken out of the fridge. Roll it out to fit an 9″ springform pan lining the bottom and the sides all the way to the top.
Don’t worry if your pastry tears, just take the overhanging pieces and patch up the holes! That pastry is very pliable and forgiving.
When you have finished lining the springform pan, put it back in the fridge for 20 minutes. Then take it out of the fridge and fill it with the cheese filling and top with apricots.
Now it’s time to get your crumb topping out of the freezer. In Russia this dessert is called “Tertiy Pirog”, which literally means “Grated Pastry”.
This funny name comes from the top pastry being frozen and then grated directly on the filling with a vegetable grater.
I decided to toss my crumbs with ground almonds for an extra indulgence. Trim off your overhanging sides and press them gently in to blend with the crumb topping. When the pastry casing bakes it magically all blends together beautifully.
Put it in the preheated oven at 350F/180C and bake for 50 minutes or until golden. Let it sit for about an hour or until cool to the touch. Then chill it in the refrigerator for at least 2 more hours to ensure the cheese filling in cooled completely.
Waiting for it was the hardest part for me! Dust with additional powdered sugar if you like a little bit of drama and enjoy with a cup of tea!
More cheesecake recipes
Crumb Apricot Cheesecake
For the pastry:
- 300 g /2 ½ cups flour
- 250 g /1 cup butter
- 200 g /1 cup sugar
- 1 egg
- ½ tsp baking powder
For the filling:
- 12 apricots
- 500 g /16 oz Farmer's Cheese or tvorog/cream cheese
- 2 eggs
- 200 g /1 cup sugar
- 2 tbsp semolina
- 1 tsp vanilla extract or seeds from 1 vanilla bean
- ¼ cup ground almonds for the topping
- In the food processor combine flour, cold butter, sugar and baking powder, pulse until the mixture resembles fine bread crumbs, add the egg and pulse until just combined. (This could also be easily done in a regular bowl with a pastry blender.)
- Take the pastry out of the food processor, it will be soft. Pinch off ⅓ of the pastry, wrap it in a plastic wrap and put in the freezer. Wrap the rest in the plastic wrap as well and put this portion in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Cut your apricots in half and pit them. Set aside.
- Combine farmer's cheese or cream cheese, eggs, sugar, semolina and vanilla bean seeds in a large bowl using a hand mixer until smooth or a food processor if you want your farmer's cheese to be less grainy. ( I processed mine in a food processor for a silky consistency.)
- When the pastry is finished chilling take it out of the fridge and roll it out to fit an 9″ springform pan lining the bottom and the sides all the way to the top. Don’t worry if your pastry tears, just take the overhanging pieces and patch up the holes! When your springform pan is lined all the way put it back in the fridge for 20 minutes.
- Then take it out of the fridge and fill it with the cheese filling and top with apricots. Grate the the frozen part of the pastry with a vegetable grater and toss your crumbs with ground almonds (optional). Trim off your overhanging sides and press them gently in to blend with the crumb topping.
- Put it in the preheated oven at 350F/180C and bake for 50 minutes or until golden. Cool it for an hour until cool to the touch and then chill it in the refrigerator for at least 2 more hours to ensure the cheese filling in cooled completely.
If you make my crumb apricot cheesecake, make sure to tag @vikalinka in your photos, so I can see them! Are you following me on Instagram?
Semolina for this recipe should be raw or cooked?
Raw semolina here. Enjoy!
Maria Piro says
Thank you! 😉
Molly Smith says
This was delicious. I made it with figs, though, instead of apricots as that’s what was available at the store when I went. They didn’t cook down much, if I make it again with figs, I would slice them thinner. Also, I got a much smaller layer of cheesecake. I may increase by 50% the recipe for that portion next time (and I used cream cheese). Also, it took about 10-15 minutes longer to bake. However, the recipe is easy and delicious.
Two questions: 1) can you make this in advance (say the day before) and keep it in the fridge? 2) Can I replace the regular sugar with a replacement (say stevia or something like that)? I want to make this cake for a team meeting and I have a collegue that doesn’t tolerate regular sugar.
Hi Annick, you can definitely make a day in advance and keep it refrigerated. You can also substitute sugar but you would have to work out quantities based on package instructions as they are all different. I find Splenda tastes closest to sugar. Good luck! 🙂
thank you for your recipe, I made it but after cooling, the crumb topping seprated from overhanging side 😞 what shoud I do to avoid this . if it is possible for you I would be glad to see your reply in my messages in instagram id 20_cuit 🙏🏻😊
Hi Maedeh, I’ve never experienced that issue, so it’s difficult to know what exactly went wrong since I wasn’t in the kitchen with you. Perhaps your fruit was too wet?
Hi vikslinka, at first thank yoy for your reply, what you mean that my fruits were wet? I used fresh apricots 😞I wish I could send you the pictures of my cook, maybe you could know better what the problem was.
Did the sides of the crust come up to the top, Maedeh? If they did, the crumb topping should’ve become attached to the sides as the cheesecake baked. That crust is similar to a cookie crust, which expands when baking as opposed to a pie crust that shrinks. Have you made any adjustments to the recipe?
I did exactly what ever you wrote on your recipe, first i poured crumb topping, then i trimed off overhanging side and attached to the topping, on oven it was so good but while cooling the top seprated from side
It’s best to cool it completely while still in the pan. That way the cheesecake will keep the structural integrity.
Arti shah says
Instead of apricot caj we use peaches
Absolutely, I am sure it will be delicious with peaches!
This was delicious!! I added fresh blueberries and used the food processor’s medium grating blade to grate the frozen dough. What a great idea for a cheese cake topping. Thanks for the fabulous recipe!!
Thrilled to hear you enjoyed it, Marjorie! I adore this recipe that’s been perfected by generations of women before me. 🙂
Hi! I made this cheesecake after weeks of procrastinating, but I’m so happy I finally did it! It’s delicious, and a great use of apricots! Although, during baking, the cake started leaking apricot juice, I believe, and smoked up my kitchen, but it turned out fine, though, so I’m very happy you posted this recipe. Thank you!
Made it and loved it! We had the cake with friends and everybody enjoyed the taste.
The cake turded out really well – even without the eggs (my daughter is allergic).
It will be definetely a new favorite. Thank you for sharing!
Great to know that it tasted great even without the eggs! Thank you for sharing, Ria.
Thank you so much for this recipe! It was delicious and the whole family loved it. Such a great way to incorporate apricots other than in a tart or cake 🙂
You are so welcome, Aisha. So pleased you enjoyed it.
Brought it to work to share and there weren’t any left overs! I also substituted the semolina with rice flour. The dessert didn’t look as pretty as yours, but it tasted great!
So glad to hear it was tasty, Alia!!
I made it gluten free: 1.5 cup coconut flour and 1 cup rice flour and it is delicious. Next time I am going to put more apricots. Thanks for sharing!
Where can I purchase farmers cheese?
It depends where you live, Deisy. In the UK, where I am, you can buy it at Sainsbury’s, Tesco’s and independent Polish and other Eastern European shops under the name of Twarog or Tvorog or curd cheese. It’s called farmer’s cheese in North America and should be sold in all major supermarkets.
Looks deliciuos, i ran out of butter, could I substitute with oil?
I wouldn’t use oil here as I think it will affect the texture, Olga, but if you are brave and willing to experiment you can try and let me know how it turns out! 🙂
Forgot to add a 5 ***** rating to my post!
Made this cheesecake for the first time yesterday and our friends had nothing but praise and questions on the filling, richness of the pastry but most of all the grated pastry topping was the biggest hit (as suggested mixed with geated almonds). Thank you so much for sharing on Pintrest and I will certainly be trying many more of your recipes.
Oh that makes me so happy! Thank you for sharing that, Sharon!
Kate @ Diethood says
WOW! This is beyond beautiful!! I’d also like to have the entire thing all to myself! Also? I completely agree and understand those cravings for something from back home! 🙂
Nice!! I’m so trying this. Do I have to create a waterbath for the cheesecake? ?
Not for this one, Jessica. There is quite a bit of crust around it and you don’t want it to steam. 🙂
Can u use can apricots?
Of course, you can use anything you like, Tasha. They will be different in texture, of course, a bit more mushy but if you don’t mind that, go for it! 🙂
This looks fantastic! I’m curious about the semolina though- do you mean semolina flour, and what is the purpose of the semolina in this recipe?
Can semolina be substituted with another ingredient?
Amber, semolina and semolina flour are the same thing, it’s used in this recipe as a binding agent. You can substitute it with regular flour or leave it out all together, however, it gives the cheesecake a super smooth and silky texture.
This looks like a terrific recipe. May I say your photographs are incredible. You could be (an perhaps are) a professional food photographer!! Outstanding. Thank you for sharing.
Oh thank you so much for your compliment. You are too kind. I am not a professional photographer, just dabbling in it for fun. 🙂
Have you made this with blueberries or mangos?
What other fruits have you tried?
Susan, you can make this cake with any fruit you like. It’s all about personal preference, just make sure it’s ripe. 🙂
Wow this looks gorgeous.. Planning to make it for my partner’s birthday 🙂
Lea @ Lea's Cooking says
Wow! Not only does it looks stunning – it looks delicious too. Love apricots. 🙂
Thank you, Leah! I love apricots too:-)
Thank you! I am waiting for the heat to subside so I can make another one soon. 🙂
This looks so, SO good! My Dad would love the fact that there’s crust on the bottom, sides and top! Bookmarking! 🙂
Sarah, that’s my favourite part too. 🙂
wow that looks delicious!